MARINE CORPS BASE QUANTICO, Va. --
More than 700 people attended the Town of Quantico’s "Salute To Our Troops" Fireworks and Concert event which was a part of the 2013 Summer Music Concert Series at the town’s Municipal Park on Aug. 31.
This was the fourth and final event for the series. The town originally had planned to put on a fireworks show for the 4th of July but ran into permit and scheduling.
“Our primary sponsor, David Hensley of Quantico Tactical, and I agreed that if we were unable to have a fireworks display to celebrate the birth of our great country, the next best thing was to honor the patriots who help to keep it great: the men and women of our armed services,” said Kevin P. Brown, mayor of the Town of Quantico.
The event was free and open to the public and, from the mayor’s perspective, it was a great opportunity to put on a quality event for the base residents and personnel who mean so much to the success the small town.
Besides the smoked barbecue and beer, the highlight of the evening was Tyler Toliver, Nashville recording artist and a former Marine, singing the National Anthem as the Marine Corps Base Quantico Color Guard presented the colors.
“I’ve never done a marching on the colors at an event like this,” said Cpl. Raphael Spurlock, senior rifle bearer, Ceremonial Platoon. “I actually brought my family along with me. As soon as I’m done working, I’ll be enjoying the festivities and the fireworks display with them.”
As the evening progressed, more and more people came to enjoy the breeze by the Potomac, play with their children in the grass and listen to country and blues music played by Rose Between Thorns. But what everyone was really waiting for was the more than 15-minute fireworks display that could be heard throughout the base.
“The response from the attendees I spoke with was overwhelmingly positive,” Brown said. “As I have said in the past, I think the town and base residents want to see the town be successful and, with each event, I think we are proving we can be. I hope this year's Summer Music Concert Series is just the start. It has certainly laid the groundwork for next summer. “
Brown is currently working with the American Canoe Association to host a canoe and kayak race in early October. It will be called the "Quantico Blockade Run" to help draw attention to the fact that the Town of Quantico, named Evansport at the time, was one of the main gun emplacements during the Confederate blockade of the Potomac River in 1861. They are still working out the details and hope to finalize them over the next few weeks.